Review Summary: Ascariasis are a few steps ahead of the competition. A big few.Ocean Of Colour
is the first Self-Released EP by Ascariasis, a four-piece Metal machine hailing from Burlington, Ontario.
It's safe to say that I was expecting something comparable to The Discovery
, judging by the front cover that seemed to anticipate something of that sort - Not that you can just simply emulate Born Of Osiris, but you get the picture (unintentional pun). The thing is that Ocean Of Colour
IS something by some means comparable to The Discovery
, but there’s much more beyond that easy comparison.
Signs of great things to come are given in the opening track, Shatter
, in which the guitars explode into a unique pattern, right in the the beginning, after a small, simple fade in opening.
Throughout the album, it’s noticeable that the bass isn’t tossed into the background, and that it most definitely is a vital presence throughout the release. A perfect example on the bass intervention would be the astonishing riff by the end of Torchbearer
, a song that comes as an imperial presentation of Deathcore done right. Onward to the vocals, that consisting in low pitched growls most of the time, seem to fit just right into the chaotic, yet beautiful sound of respectable technical riffs and breakdowns. Oh yes, there are breakdowns, and I don’t mean some chuggin-poppin-swaggin
excuses for transitions (even though some of those are awesome). We’re talking about some serious breakdowns – complex guitar work, everything but lazy drumming, creativity, great distribution, you name it. Someone thought of putting some synthesized sounds here and there – Worked like a charm. A good example of clever and thoughtful use of synth comes within Shatter
, in which a fine breakdown gets to hold hands with a great synthesized ambience, obtaining a sound we’d expect to hear out of any good Born Of Osiris’ release. It’s also in Shatter
that we are presented with some clues that should lead any attentive listener to think that Ascariasis borrows some inspiration from Progressive/Jazz oriented acts. But then again, there is so much to be said about the guitars. It’s hard to pinpoint all the major influences of Ascariasis with precision, but it’s easy to understand that those are nowhere near from limited. I believe it’s fair to say that Ascariasis don’t care much if what they play is A, B or C. That leads me to Eleven
, an emotive, unique track that seems to focus on adding some solidity to the release, and accomplishes that in the best possible way. One might say it doesn’t display Ascariasis’ sound at its’ full extent and value, but it is a great display of melody within Death Metal. One song that does show what Ascariasis is all about is the homonym track, Ocean of Colour
, which comes with the full package of masterful riffs, breakdowns, mind blowing solos and of course, one of the best vocal displays in the release. Although you move on from such an amazing track, it’s not without surprise that you go through the last track of the EP. Carving the World
starts off great, only to develop into one of the best finales I have ever witnessed. The beginning is as chaotic and powerful as in any other song they wrote (and hopefully will write), but then comes the clean singing. Personally, I wasn’t expecting to hear clean singing from these guys by that moment, and let me confess that at first it didn’t feel very right to me. Turns out, after a while I got into it. It comes as one mournful, heavy rain of sentiment, and with the finishing solo that comes after it… It’s pure art.
Now for the bad part… Wait, never mind. There’s no such thing here.
Now seriously, it takes guts (or perhaps unawareness) to call these guys out for anything they did wrong in Ocean Of Colour
. The reason is that they did nothing wrong, not in the full connotation of the word. Is the production value the best it could ever get? No, it’s not, but it’s actually very decent. Is the mixing executed to perfection? Well, it’s actually admirable. The fact that they actually created this without endorsements makes it admirable right away. The fact that this is what they present as their first press release, that’s perhaps the most admirable thing of all. And then comes the sheer brutality of the drums (seriously, outstanding drumming), the remarkable combination of skill and creativity by the guitars, the great presentation of bass and synthesized sounds. Even the order in which the tracks are disposed feels right. What more to say? As a whole, Ocean Of Colour
makes sense in every way.
Canada has had a good reputation for bringing up some of the best Deathcore bands since the whole thing begin. Ascariasis introduce themselves as an excellent unit, in which all the individuals seem capable of delivering. As far as I’m concerned, Ascariasis have the quality to reach a superior status among the Canadian scene, and will hopefully do just that. If there’s still some justice within our society, Ascariasis will reign one day.